Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Hope Over Fear

Today, huddled in a small conference room on the University of Miami medical campus, me and 15 colleagues -- white, black, latino, old, young, gay, straight -- witnessed the dawn of a new era with the inauguration of America's 44th president.

Listening to the words and promises of President Barack Obama, during a time when our nation is in financial crisis and we're involved in two wars, I am truly hopeful that we now have the leadership necessary to guide us safely and triumphantly through these dark times.

There is no doubt we will all make sacrifices along the way, but for the first time in my adult life, I believe it's possible to live in a world of peace, equality, prosperity, freedom, and inclusion for all...in the immortal words of Stevie Wonder we will keep at this "...til we reach a higher ground."

Although the inaugural address had many memorable, moving, and inspiring moments, my favorite was the closing:

So let us mark this day with remembrance, of who we are and how far we have traveled. In the year of America's birth, in the coldest of months, a small band of patriots huddled by dying campfires on the shores of an icy river. The capital was abandoned. The enemy was advancing. The snow was stained with blood. At a moment when the outcome of our revolution was most in doubt, the father of our nation ordered these words be read to the people:

"Let it be told to the future world...that in the depth of winter, when nothing but hope and virtue could survive...that the city and the country, alarmed at one common danger, came forth to meet [it]."

America. In the face of our common dangers, in this winter of our hardship, let us remember these timeless words. With hope and virtue, let us brave once more the icy currents, and endure what storms may come. Let it be said by our children's children that when we were tested we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and God's grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations.

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